Steelers is a celebrated American football team from Pittsburgh that was continuously active since 1945, although some attempts to create this brand was recorded during the War, and there were other major teams from this city even before Steelers were conceptualized. We don’t have much branding info on those teams, however.
The team as we know it started its path to glory in 1945 as a club inspired by the steel industry. Now, the name most likely suggests that the people behind the team’s full revitalization in 1945 were steel magnates. Regardless, steel was a major branding element for them in the early years.
The first logotype took a shape of a standard football from these times. It’s an oval shape with a seam going across the middle. But this symbol also acts as a window of sorts. Inside the football, you can see various metallurgy scenes inspired by the colors of grey, black and gold.
On the rims of the ball were the words ‘Pittsburgh Steelers’ (on the half) and ‘Football Club’ (on the bottom) in black letters set against the white background.
In 1962, the team decided to put their new mascot on the official logo.
It featured a steel worker kicking the football while bouncing on top of the I-beam. Notably, all elements on this picture are either yellow or black. Incidentally, those were the colors of the team since the inception and into the 21st century.
In 1969, the club adopted the logo that was with them for the longest time. It featured a grey ring with a black circle inside. Inside the circle still were three star-like shapes – rhombuses with thin angles – as well as the word ‘Steelers’ on the left side, written in black letters.
The stars don’t immediately follow the team colors this time (they are yellow, red and blue – from the top).
In 2002, the designers added a thin black outline outside the ring part. Except for that, nothing at all changed.
The reason why the club adopted these weird rhomb shapes in 1969 was because American Iron and Steel Institute (long time owners) use a similar logo. However, instead of the red shape in the middle they use an orange one. They call this symbol a ‘Steelmark’.